I grew up in Chennai in a quintessential South Indian family soaked in traditional customs and values. As a protocol, no matter how inclined one was towards the traditional art forms of dance and music, getting initiated to one of them was a mandate. I took to music in my own way learning classical Carnatic Music earnestly and this had over the years manifested in the small accolades I won during my school and college years. But little did I realize that I had lost sight of a very strong desire that I had then decided to bury within me owing to the usual demands of life…

Life then caught up with me…a master’s degree, marriage to a NRI, a dream job in a foreign land and so on and forth. The challenges of a pushy job, complexities of running a household had got the better of me that I had even failed to exercise my vocal chords to sing lullabies for my son when he was born. But then it was Chennai calling again but I was still impervious to the myriad opportunities the city offered culturally that I was once inclined to as a child and as a teenager. The Chennai music festival in December was a case in point. I had somewhere started mutely following the various events and artists performing but still chose to keep my nose to the grindstone and kept going with the drive of a force that kept me spinning. My Job meant the world to me!
Fate had something else in store. Things always don’t go in an upward trajectory. The world economy was going through a downturn  and so was the organization I was working for. I had to bow to the inevitable. I was running the risk of losing my job. I was crest- fallen. I had to get a hold of myself and regroup my thoughts. I probably had to take a sneak peek at the world outside my job!

A chance encounter with some old friends in the field of music re-kindled my passion for music. I realized that Chennai was undoubtedly the cultural hub of this country and had opportunities galore. I started attending Carnatic Music concerts again and soul stirring performances by various artists and it changed my perspective about life. I realized that music is a phenomenon that is beyond the physical. Last December, I had attended an unprecedented number of Carnatic concerts and was truly intrigued by the legacy of this art form. The exuberance in Chennai city on account of these concerts in the month of December was palpable. I had come out of my stupor (my professional life) and felt that it is imperative that I follow my muse which I had put on the back burner all these years.

Today, my learning is limited to listening and singing along with my favorite artists on the move.. I have started taking  formal classes and resumed my passion with a renewed gusto.
I weathered the storm. As it’s said, music is beyond all boundaries. For me, it has got me out of the confines of my work place. I may be taking baby steps in pursuing  this rich cultural art form , nonetheless I believe it is not too late.  I am pretty confident I will get back to a corporate life soon which  gives me an identity but more importantly,  I have  found my true calling- Music which has given me sanity ! Whoever thinks, Carnatic Music is Esoteric..Ask me…..

About the Author: Kavitha Rajaram is an ex-banker with a passion for classical Carnatic music. As mother &  busy professional, she has finally found her balance through the pursuit of music. Her other interests include working with children & education.